Fortescue Future Industries Pty Ltd (FFI) has signed an option agreement with Tasmanian Ports Corporation Pty Ltd (TasPorts) to exclusively negotiate all land and operating access requirements for a hydrogen plant in Bell Bay in Northern Tasmania.
The agreement is an important milestone towards developing the Tasmania green hydrogen project, which could be one of the world’s largest green hydrogen plants once commissioned. The plant will help in domestic demand and create a significant export market for green hydrogen from Australia.
The Tasmania project consists of building a 250 MW green hydrogen plant at the Bell Bay Industrial Precinct, with a production capacity of 250,000 tonnes/year of green ammonia for domestic use and international export.
FFI has already invested in research and feasibility studies of the project, and now the agreement with TasPorts indicates the company seriousness of employing Tasmania’s comparative advantage in renewable energy generation. The final investment decision for the project is expected to be made by the Fortescue Board in 2021.
The project is expected to deliver a net AU$ 2 billion increase to gross state product over the project’s life, supporting local jobs.
In its Renewable Hydrogen Action Plan, the Tasmanian Government highlighted the state’s importance for the development of a green hydrogen industry due to its low-cost, reliable renewable power and excellent port and water infrastructure.
Julie Shuttleworth, CEF of FFI, said, “The signing of this agreement with TasPorts marks the beginning of a ground-breaking partnership, aiming for the first export of green hydrogen from an Australian port.”
Anthony Donald, TasPorts CEO, said, “Securing land is one of the critical ingredients to enable the realisation of green hydrogen developments at Bell Bay and TasPorts is proud to be taking a lead role to support the renewable energy industry.”